Fellowship Program


The Social Connectedness Fellowship empowers students and recent graduates to carry out innovative research that will inspire local and global action to build community and belonging.

From May-August, Fellows alongside their partner organizations, conduct research to address issues relating to social isolation and belonging. They connect with experts in their field as well as communities who can inform their research, engage virtually and creatively with the communities their research is designed to serve, and recommend program and policy solutions to help foster connectedness and build belonging.


The Social Connectedness Fellowship Program was created in the summer of 2017 to enable students and recent graduates to expand their professional networks and gain hands-on experience in research and programming, all while equipping them with new skills and a framework to tackle issues of the 21st century.

Fellows work with a partner organization in the social connectedness movement and conduct research, writing, analysis, and outreach in thematic areas related to social isolation and connectedness. They gain knowledge and develop research specific to their partner’s objectives/mandates, as well as connect with other partners to consult and benefit from their expertise. Past partners have included: Data-Driven Lab, Special Olympics International, Human Rights Watch, Synergos Institute, Partners in Health, Our Place, The Stop Community Food Centre, City of Toronto, HelpAge International, and more.

Due to the strong linkages and outreach with partners and community organizations, our Fellows have delivered impact-driven research. Final research reports from Fellows have  inspired new events on behalf of SCSC, launched pilot programs with partners and directly influenced community initiatives.

Our Fellowship Alumni have  gone on to pursue advanced degrees in Law, Social Policy, Economics, Environment, Education, Architecture and Design, to name a few. Many have gone on to work in organizations and institutions such as UNESCO, TakingITGlobal, UN Environment Programme, and the McConnell Foundation.

“It was the first time I was truly given the opportunity to mold my own project and in doing so, I not only learned new skills related to interviewing techniques, event management, and community-building, but I also found a new confidence in my own capabilities to effectuate real change at the grassroots level.”

Social Connectedness Fellow 2019